Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Edward Elgar

Letter No.: 
VWL1191
Feb 19th [1934]

From R. Vaughan Williams,
The White Gates,
Westcott Road,
Dorking.

Dear Elgar

I want to tell you how my choirs of the Dorking Festival are loving preparing “Gerontius” - Greatly daring I suggested it for this year's festival - I had been longing to do it for years, but had thought it too dangerous an experiment as I could not bear to do it badly - Whether we shall do it well I do not know - But if enthusiasm and hard work can achieve anything be sure that it will not lack those.
And it will be one of the great moments in my life when I stand with trembling baton to conduct it - we have good soloists - Astra Desmond, Steuart Wilson and Harold Williams  - and we shall think of you - please give us your blessing.
Of course this wants no answer.
Yours affectionately

R. Vaughan Williams

Location of original letter:

Shelfmark of original letter: 
Parcel 787

Location of copy:

Shelfmark of copy: 
MS Mus.1714/1/8, f.6 (typed copy)
General notes: 

On the performance of Gerontius at Dorking, see R.V.W.: a biography, p.197. Elgar was terminally ill at this time and died on 23 February, three days after receiving this letter.

Format: 
Letter
Citation: 
Cobbe 243; Jerrold Northrop Moore ed., Edward Elgar: Letters of a lifetime, p.480.
Original database number: 
340219